Nutrition labels getting a makeover

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Nutrition labels are getting ready for some changes.

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is changing the Nutrition Facts Panel within the next two to three years. The current labeling hasn’t been changed since 1993, and is being updated to accommodate modern consumers and scientific evidence.

Signature changes include:

  • Increased type size for “Calories,” “servings per container” and “Serving Size”
  • Number of calories and serving sizes will be bolded
  • Declared amounts for percent Daily Value of vitamin D, calcium, iron and potassium
  • An updated percent Daily Value footnote that will read: “*The % Daily Value tells you how much a nutrient in a serving of food contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.”
  • “Added sugars” will be included in grams and as percent Daily Value
  • Vitamins A and C will no longer be required on the labeling 
  • “Calories from Fat” will be removed
  • Updated daily values for sodium, dietary fiber and vitamin D based on newer scientific evidence
  • Serving sizes will be based on amounts of food and beverages that individuals consume, not how much they should consume
  • Packages between one and two servings will have nutrients labeled as one servings, since they are typically consumed in one sitting
  • Dual column labels will appear on products larger than a single servings that could be consumed in one sitting or multiple sittings

On its website, the FDA says it is making the change “in order to make sure consumers have access to more recent and accurate nutrition information about the foods they are eating.”

The FDA says manufacturers should begin using the new labeling by July 26, 2018. Manufacturers bringing in less than $10 million in annual food sales will have an additional year to make the change. The new labeling requirements will also apply to imported foods.

Example of the new Nutrition Facts Label (Image Courtesy of FDA)